Thursday, April 26, 2012

7 reasons why R&E networks and Universities are critical to future of broadband

[There has been considerable discussion about the future of broadband in terms of infrastructure i.e. fiber, wireless, community owned etc . However, there has been little discussion, to borrow a phrase from Internet 2 , on Net+ broadband services.
It is in the Net+ services where I think R&E networks can play a critical in helping communities and small commercial ISPs deploy advanced services and applications that will provide new business models to underwrite the costs of next generation broadband. The next generation broadband I believe will look like architecture of existing R&E networks, rather than the monolithic walled gardens of the telcos/cablecos. Partnering in next generation broadband is also in line with the core missions of R&E networks, schools, libraries and universities in terms of the future of data intensive researcher from thousands of distributed sensors and delivering research and education to any device, any time, anyplace. The fundamental factor driving a new vision of next generation broadband is the fact that Net+ services such as clouds and content distribution are localizing traffic (i.e over 90% of Internet traffic will appear to be locally sourced – even though actual sites they may be accessing sites 1000s kms away). I believe through the widespread application of Net+ services will also create a whole new innovation and economic eco-system much in the same way R&E networks enabled the original Internet. See my paper on “Personal Perspective on Future of R&E networks” A great example of this thinking is the recent announcement of ESPN (the major US sports network) to partner with Internet 2. RT See also how clouds and Net+ services are enabling an entire new innovation ecosystem and thousands of new startups

The 7 important areas where R&E networks can play an important role in advancing and support community broadband are as follows:

1. Encouraging universities, colleges, schools and libraries to be anchor institutions in a distributed broadband network architecture. This does NOT mean that R&E networks will provide basic Internet to homes or commercial enterprises, but these anchor institutions and R&E networks can host a number of Net+ services to interconnect to services providers, critical to the community such as distributed content caching, integrated 4G/Wifi nodes and local peering. This will also allow these institutions to deliver their services to the community via any device, anyplace any time. See New OTI Whitepaper, "Universities and R&E networks as Hubs for Next-Generation Networks":

2. Developing Open Content Distribution Networks to integrate Net+ cloud and content services into one seamless service offering. See” Why R&E Networks Should Be Aware of the CDN Interconnect Initiative (CDNI)” . See also Google and Akamai develop new caching technology and protocols to speed up Internet over 3G/4G networks

3. Building enterprise centric integrated WifI/4G networks, versus telco/cableco attempt to make public Wifi become part of walled garden cell phone network. See Wi-Fi offloading: Who controls your handset? See JANET, AARnet and SURFnet initiatives

4. Building community IXPs or TXPs, local peering and open collaborative exchanges (OXPs). See great presentation at RIPE 64 on the demand for local IXPs being driven by higher access speeds. Also a new SURFnet concept of building open collaborative exchanges using SURFconext to provide seamless access to a variety of content and cloud services -

5. Extending Software Defined Networks to the last mile. See how Software Defined Networks can solve consumers’ broadband woes See also Reverse Passive Optical Networks (RPON)

6. Deploying zero carbon Green IT networks. There are many companies that are building Wifi/4G technology that is entirely solar or wind powered. See Green Wifi. Community anchor institutions should not incur additional energy costs in delivering services to the community.

7. Developing Net+ middleware and applications. For example see Research IT as a Service

Additional pointers:
Higher ed leaders announce disruptive technology to advance U.S. research, reduce higher ed costs
Internet2 critical leadership role in bringing Dell, Microsoft, and Others to Cloud-Services Program for Colleges
ESPN see benefit in develop next innovative sports platform in partnership with the NREN - an enlightened approach RT
New OTI Whitepaper, "Universities and R&E networks as Hubs for Next-Generation Networks":
Exciting new concept: Open Collaborative Exchange (OXC)
Google and Akamai develop new caching technology and protocols to speed up Internet over 3G/4G networks
France’s Wi-Fi gates swing open: Free Mobile activates 4M hotspots RT @gigaom
How Software Defined Networks can solve consumers’ broadband woes. See also #UCLP and #RPON
A third of all Internet users visit a site each day hosted by Amazon infrastructure - RT @GeekWire -
How Cloud Computing Changes Startup Investing RT @cybera
Thousands of startup companies rely on Amazon cloud, dramatically changing VC and innovation industry
Study Reveals Economic Benefits of IXPs in Emerging Markets. Benefits also to small communities in developed countries
Telecom liberalisation for the Internet of Things could save the transport sector billions RT @internetthought
Introducing Research IT as a Service with commercial clouds: Globus Storage, Globus Collaborate, and Globus Integrate
Network as a Service (OpenNaaS) - software defined networks taken to new level

Green Internet
New business models – partnering with broadband infrastructure companies
Extending Net+ services to the community – citizien science
Network architectures – SDN, UCLP, RPON (next phase of SDN is in the last mile)

R&E Network and Green Internet Consultant.
twitter: BillStArnaud
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